Airing Tuesdays at 8pm on Sky 1
Writers: Eric Wallace
Director: Harry Jierjian
Essential Plot Points:
- Cisco and Harry are brainstorming ideas to stop DeVoe. Harry advocates for genetic editing but Cisco is not at home to potentially turning people into chickens.
- Harry develops an intelligence booster. Which Cisco instantly renames a ‘thinking cap’. Harry’s plan is to overclock his own brain’s neurochemistry to become smarter than DeVoe. The others are reluctant and worried for Harry’s safety but he is all the way in. And, when Iris and Caitlin agree to it, they all sign off on it bar Cisco.
- Cisco flat out refuses to help. And Ralph, whose life is literally on the line here, is very far from happy about it.
- Iris tries to talk to Ralph but he’s disgusted that they aren’t willing to go with Harry’s plan, and he’s tired of Iris running the team from behind the front lines.
- Barry meets Joe for coffee. Joe tells him that the mayor insists on sitting down with the DeVoes before signing off on Barry returning to the force. Joe is also deeply worried about another Bus Meta showing up before they’re ready.
- And as if by magic, an unusually English meta is robbing a bank using his flame powers. A customer tries to talk him down and it almost works before the robber attacks him. However, when he tries to kill the man with his powers, they’re gone and he’s arrested…
- Joe and Cisco interview the would be robber and track down a likely identity for the mysterious man who may have stolen his powers. Still smarting over Ralph’s crack, Iris goes with her dad to question the suspect.
- Meanwhile Harry gets the thinking cap up and running and it works brilliantly, RIGHT up until it goes on fire.
- At the hospital where their suspect works, Joe reassures Iris (And her magnificent jacket) that she has nothing to prove. Their suspect, an EMT called Matthew Kim, tries to play innocent but it doesn’t work. He holds Iris hostage, The Flash arrives, shoves him and…
- Iris’ hands start vibrating. By grabbing Kim and Iris, Barry inadvertently closed the circuit and dumped his powers into Iris.
- The team test Iris and confirm everything that gave Barry powers now sits inside her genetic structure. Better still, they work out that:
- It may be possible to reverse it.
- They could use Kim to remove DeVoe’s powers.
- Melting Point is a great name for a supervillain
- Cisco argues with Harry about the thinking cap and refuses to accept it isn’t dangerous. Barry and Iris train and talk openly about how difficult Barry is finding this. Because they’re both awesome now, they talk honestly and openly about their feelings and it’s awesome.
- Then an alarm comes in. A tower fire. They need a Flash.
- And they have one.
- With a borrowed mask, iris evacuates the victims. But when her leg is pinned she panics. Cisco breaches her clear at the last second.
- The bad news piles up. Caitlin can’t reverse the process and Ralph isn’t prepared to get off the bench due to the threat to his life. But the good news is that Cisco sees the need for the thinking cap and agrees to help Harry out. As long as he doesn’t use dark matter…
- Iris and Barry talk and she admits she feels like she’s lost her fearlessness since the Savitar incident and going full time with Team Flash. Barry, because these two are awesome now, encourages her. Especially when they get a lead on whoever got the flame powers…
- With a new suit and new confidence, Iris runs down the bank customer who got the flame powers. Kim shows up, tries to talk him down and is seconds from death when Iris saves him.
- The flame thrower triggers a flame cyclone and with no option, Wells triggers the thinking cap to get the solution. He tells Iris she has to create a tidal wave to offset the flame cyclone otherwise it’ll devastate the city.
- And Iris NAILS IT. The cyclone is extinguished, the perp is in cuffs, the day is saved.
- Later, at the lab, Kim apologizes profusely and swaps Iris and Barry’s abilities back. He feels terrible about what happened and signs up for the plan to de-power DeVoe.
- Iris chats with Ralph who admits what everyone knows; he’s terrified. Iris explains she felt the same way during the Savitar incident and chose to keep living. Ralph compliments her, and they get ready to go back to the fight with DeVoe.
- Later, Barry asks Iris why she gave up her speed. She explains that speed isn’t what makes a speedster, it’s their personality, their desire to help. That’s Barry’s way. Her way is different. And then we see she’s updated her blog and is going back to journalism and her old Flash blog. She starts typing and smiles. She’s back.
- At the lab, Harry is way past tolerances when Cisco insists they shut down the thinking cap. But it doesn’t matter because Harry has finally got the names of the last two bus metas…
This is another winner from a half season that’s absolutely hit it’s stride. A massive part of that is Candice Patton, who revels in being front and centre here. We don’t get very much of her in the actual suit but what there is impresses. Especially as Iris’ learning curve is both pleasingly steep and shorter than Barry’s. That makes a ton of sense give she’s been part of a team working out what speedsters can do but it doesn’t make her successes seem easy. Anything but. In fact her struggles with her powers throw Barry’s own into stark relief too. Being a speedster is difficult, being a hero is hard. This episode proves not only that but also that there are no weak links in Team Flash and Iris is absolutely the right person to be in charge. In the hands of a lesser writer, Ralph throwing yet another flounce would be a negative. Here, we get context for why he’s acting like that which strengthens both his character and Iris’. Her time in the suit isn’t long but this Flash gets a lot done before her run is finished.
There’s refreshing nuance like that throughout. Barry and Iris’ relationship is front and center and the reason why they work in their new roles instead of falling apart. Caitlin’s not even slightly concealed joy at her girl getting a chance to shine is a beautiful moment of solidarity. Likewise Joe congratulating his daughter and calling her ‘Flash’, Cisco and Harry’s bickering concern for each other and so much more. Best of all, Matthew Kim, this week’s bus meta, is a fun, interesting character whose attitude towards his powers is refreshingly altruistic.
It’s not all good news of course, because nothing ever is. The heavy metal meta that Iris fight is VERY awful and Joe is still under used but this is still great fun. Another impressive episode in what’s starting to look like the best season this show has ever had.
- Iris. Candice Patton is amazing this week.
- Every single Cisco and Harry moment.
- Barry’s TOTAL lack of chill when Iris kicks ass.
- The little nod/smile ‘Oh you GOT THIS, buddy’ that Caitlin gives Iris when she’s heading out to the field makes our hearts soar.
- Barry adjusting with minimal male ego to his new role is lovely.
- Iris’ amazing colored Speed trail!
- The second flame throwing meta is very very awful. Like, every single line he delivers is awful.
And the Random:
- Leonardo Nam! Matthew Kim is played by the wonderful Leonardo Nam who stole the show in Westworld as Lutz and has appeared in everything from The Perfect Score (With future avengers Chris Evans and Scarlet Johansson) and The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift.
Harry Jierjian has edited for shows like Revolution, Supergirl and Blindspot. This is only his second directing gig, the first of which ‘Dead Or Alive’ for the last season of The Flash. And as far as we’re concerned he can come back any time he wants.
- Eric Wallace has written for The Flash, Eureka and others.
- Cisco’s English accent is UNCANNY.
- ‘Run, Iris, RUN.’
- ‘Looks like a thinking cap.’
- ‘So, Bar, YOU never made your own tidal wave…”
- ‘You make a hell of a Flash. In the costume or out,’-OUR FEELINGS, RALPH. ALL OF OUR FEELINGS
Click here for more of our The Flash coverage